Remove Hurdles to Cancer Care


COVID-19 has shone a spotlight on the significant barriers to affordable health care that cancer patients have long faced. While relief packages and proposals to date have worked to address affordability of COVID-specific testing and treatment, policymakers must also tackle hurdles that cancer patients face like removing the red tape of prior authorization and step therapy, reducing out-of-pocket costs, and ensuring cost-sharing assistance directly benefits patients. There has been a great deal of research and investment in effective therapies that allow people fighting cancer to survive and live longer. Cancer patients need Congress to act quickly to remove hurdles to quality care.

56% of cancer patients and survivors are worried about being able to afford their treatment

Latest Updates

September 30, 2022

Governor Gavin Newsom vetoed legislation that aimed to enable more Californians to benefit from biomarker testing, a critical step in accessing precision medicine treatments that can lead to fewer side effects, improved survival, better quality of life and potentially lower costs for cancer patients.

July 27, 2022

The American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network (ACS CAN) is featured in the Urban One 2022 Engaging Black America Special Supplement issued today – and, as always, we are highlighting yet another critical issue that has lifesaving implications for Americans all across the country.

July 26, 2022

A new Survivor Views survey from the American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network shows that while copay assistance programs can help cancer patients afford the medications they need, some aren’t able to apply them to their health insurance deductible or other out-of-pocket requirements, which can create a barrier to care.

July 20, 2022

Findings Highlight Need for Pennsylvania Legislature to Pass Copay Accumulator Reform Bill to Make It Easier for Pennsylvanians to Pay for Medically Necessary Medications

Remove Hurdles to Cancer Care Resources

In these comments, ACS CAN strongly supports Congress’ and the Administration’s efforts to protect patients from surprise medical bills and we are encouraged by the important steps this interim final rule takes. Specifically, we applaud the Departments’ proposed policies related to:

Where healthcare dollars are spent compared with dollars on cancer care, 2018.

Cancer patients are particularly vulnerable to spikes in their health care costs because many expensive diagnostic tests and treatments are scheduled within a short period of time, so cancer patients spend their deductible and out-of-pocket maximum quickly. These costs can be difficult to manage over the course of a year, and most monthly budgets simply can’t afford these large bills.